Students mourn after a suicide and an apparent natural death

With graduation Friday, Lynnwood High School is trying to grieve and celebrate all at once.

LYNNWOOD — As a campus mourns, the Snohomish County Medical Examiner has provided some answers to the deaths of two Lynnwood High School students.

One boy died by suicide; the other of apparent natural causes. The deaths occurred within 48 hours of one another.

The students who died were teammates on the varsity football team. Both were 17 and died in their homes.

This was supposed to be a time for relief and celebration.

The last day of classes for Lynnwood High School seniors is Thursday. A senior breakfast and graduation is Friday.

The boy who committed suicide was a junior. His mother reported his death on social media, saying “he was my everything, my best friend, a loving brother and an inspiration to so many.”

The other boy was a senior.

“The cause and manner of death are pending further lab studies, but the cause and manner of death appear to be due to natural causes. There are no suspicious circumstances,” the medical examiner reported.

Their deaths have tempered the anticipation of graduation and the end of the school year.

School leaders said they recognize that and are trying to guide students through their grief. For example, they decided to make final exams for seniors optional unless students want to improve their grades.

Students and staff are wearing yellow ribbons to remember their classmates.

The school community also is discussing how the commencement ceremony Friday might respectfully acknowledge the loss of the two classmates while marking the accomplishments of graduates, some of whom are the first in their families to finish high school.

“There is a balance between the grieving and the celebration,” said Kelly Franson, an Edmonds School District spokeswoman.

Extra counselors were on the Lynnwood campus Monday and Tuesday to help students who needed support.

Some warning signs of suicide include feeling hopeless, isolating oneself and having extreme mood swings, among others.

If a person thinks someone else has suicidal thoughts, they should ask, said Heather Thomas, spokeswoman for the Snohomish Health District.

“Talking about suicide doesn’t put the idea of suicide in their head, but asking if they’re having those thoughts or if there’s something you can do to help opens up the dialogue,” she said.

Eight young people in Snohomish County have died by suicide this school year, which is high, she said. Suicide is the second leading cause of death in the state for those ages 15 to 34.

People can speak with counselors and find other resources either online or over the phone. Those who think someone else needs help can also reach out.

Some free and confidential lifelines include Care Crisis Chat serving Western Washington at imhurting.org or 800-584-3578, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at suicidepreventionlifeline.org or 800-273-8255, and the Trevor Project Lifeline for LGBTQ Youth at thetrevor project.org or 866-488-7386. If there is immediate danger, call 911.

Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446; stevick@heraldnet.com.

Talk to us

More in Local News

911 received multiple calls reporting a fire at Marie Anne Terrace apartments early Monday morning, Feb. 6, 2023 in Everett, Washington. There were no injuries or fatalities. (Everett Fire Department)
Fire damages Everett apartments, displaces 10

The fire at the Marie Anne Terrace apartments Monday night displaced four families and caused extensive property damage.

A rack with cards bettors can use to choose their own numbers to purchase lottery ticket on a counter at a market. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)
Been to Auburn lately? That’s where $754M Powerball ticket was sold

This is only the second time a Powerball jackpot has been won in Washington.

Granite Falls
Man shot near Granite Falls; assailants at large

Two suspects fled after shooting a 33-year-old man in a motorhome Tuesday morning, according to police.

Photo by David Welton
A federal grant will help pay for the cost of adding a charging station to the Clinton ferry terminal.
Federal money to help electrify Clinton ferry dock

The Federal Transit Administration awarded state ferries a $4.9 million grant to help electrify the Mukilteo-Clinton route.

Community Transit is leasing a 60-foot articulated BYD battery electric bus this year as an early step in the zero emission planning process. (Community Transit)
Community Transit testing 60-foot electric bus

The agency leased the BYD K11M for $132,000 this year as the first step in its zero-emission planning process.

Angelica Montanari and daughter Makena, 1, outside of the Community Health Center of Snohomish County Everett-Central Clinic on Thursday, Feb. 2, 2023. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Amid patient woes, CHC of Snohomish County staffers push for a union

Doctors and nurse practitioners are worried about providers being shut out from clinical decisions, which hurts patient care.

NO CAPTION. Logo to accompany news of education.
Public school enrollment still down, even as rural districts grow

Smaller districts in Snohomish County seem to be recovering more quickly — and gaining students — than their urban counterparts.

Snohomish home-invasion suspect had been released weeks earlier

Eleazar Cabrera, 33, is accused of breaking into a home and shooting a man three times. He has a lengthy rap sheet.

NO CAPTION NECESSARY: Logo for the Cornfield Report by Jerry Cornfield. 20200112
A holiday for Lunar New Year, a return of green and white license plates

It’s Day 29. Here’s what’s happening in the 2023 session of the Washington Legislature

Most Read